Movin' On.

Wow. Talk about neglect, seriously. I am sorry I never finished telling you about our DC trip, and I’m sorry I disappeared. I think by the bottom of this post, you will understand the emotional trip I’ve been on for some time now…

I have dreamed and fantasized about writing this blog post for over a year. And now that it’s finally here, I can’t really wrap my head around it. Bear with me.

Life-changing announcement #1: Tuesday afternoon, I quit my job.

Yes, it is crazy, I know. I don’t ever blog about work because I don’t really know who reads this. But since I’m leaving, I’m willing to share a (small) bit. I have thought about leaving my job for a while now. I love the people I work with, and I love the children that my work helps, but this job was never meant to be my lifelong career. I have been here for five years – my first real job out of college – and would never have guessed I would be here as long as I have.

With Casey’s encouragement and support, I started to think about what would make me happy. What would I love to wake up and do every day. I’m only 28 – there is no reason for me to resign myself to an unhappy desk life. My life is still just beginning!

Okay, so I quit my job, now what?

Life-changing announcement #2: I’m going back to school.

When I stopped and surveyed the things that make me happy, things that keep me interested, and the things I want to know more about – it all kept coming back to one place. I love food, and specifically, I love nutrition. My hope is that someday I can do something to help other people realize how fun and fulfilling good food and a healthy lifestyle can be.

So I spent months and months looking at every program and option under the sun, and I found the one that (I think!) is perfect for me – Culinary Nutrition. That’s right folks, I’m going to cooking school! If I want to be able to show people how to eat healthy food that still tastes good, I need to know how to make it right?

I am getting my Culinary Arts degree at Johnson & Wales University, and hoping to continue after that through their Culinary Nutrition program. My program is called Garnish Your Degree (how clever!), and it’s a one year program specifically designed for people who already hold a Bachelor’s degree in another field – just like me!

Sooo, Johnson & Wales…where is that?

Life-changing announcement #3: I’m moving to Charlotte, North Carolina!

Goodbye snowy sidewalks, hello weekends at the beach! When Casey and I first started talking about moving, schools, etc. – we basically drew a line at Cincinnati and said we weren’t looking above it. I have always loved the south, and specifically the Carolinas. In my heart, I think I always knew I’d go back. There were a million pieces to this puzzle, that even I can’t believe all managed to fit together. But they did, and they do, and after months of research and planning, it’s really happening.

There are so many more details than I can possibly fit into this blog post, but I wanted to just get the basics out there, and let them rumble around for a few days until I’m ready to keep talking. Casey is going back to school too (!), we found an awesome house in Charlotte (!), and so much more, but I think this is all I have in me for today.

For those who know me well, you know that I am an intensely private person. It is very ironic that I share my life on a blog. But I can’t and don’t share everything, and I assume my readers respect and understand that. I have felt very strange keeping this big “secret” off of my blog for so long, but in all aspects of my life, I don’t like to share things until they are written in stone. For me, it’s either happening, or it’s not happening — and if it might happen, I am probably the only one who knows it.

Whew. There it is.

I almost threw up before I told my boss I was leaving. I have cried many tears to Casey, my mom, and Lindsey, about how hard it is to leave Cincinnati. I am scared I will miss being so close to my family, Casey’s family, and my friends. I am terrified of all of the unknowns.

But…

I am excited. And for the first time in a long time, I feel hopeful about my professional life. I am incredibly lucky to get the opportunity to do this – to start over – at age 28. I can’t wait to start this adventure with Casey, to learn a new city, to try something new, and to do it all together.

I know how it all must sound. First it was all about being engaged and planning a wedding. Then it was showers and parties and a whirlwind wedding weekend. Since then it’s been vacations and trips, and now moving and school? Who does this girl think she is?

That’s the problem. I’m not really sure. But I hope you’ll continue to join me as I figure it all out…

“I’m movin’ on
At last I can see life has been patiently waiting for me
And I know there’s no guarantees, but I’m not alone
There comes a time in everyone’s life
When all you can see are the years passing by
And I have made up my mind that those days are gone
I’m movin’ on…”

– Rascal Flatts